Types of Trim and Molding

Molding on a wall.

Trim and molding can add decorative accents to the design of a room. They are available in a variety of styles, sizes, and materials. Both hardwood and softwood are used in creating trim and molding. This decorative feature also has a functional aspect to it. It can be used to hide flaws in the walls and ceilings. Consider your needs and all of the possibilities before you purchase any trim or molding for your home.

Baseboard Molding

This trim product hides the connection between the wall and the floor. The bottom of this type of trim is usually wider than the top. This design feature creates protection against anything that may come in contact with the wall such as a vacuum, a broom, or any other cleaning tool.

Cap Molding

This type of molding acts as a cap on a flat frame. It is often used in wainscoting and wall paneling. It is installed over a base molding and provides a rounded, finished profile.

Back Band Molding

This type of molding can be used with cap molding. By adding it to another molding, you can design your own personal design. It is commonly used on window and door frames.

Ceiling Molding

Ceiling molding acts much like baseboard molding, only it covers the joint between the wall and the ceiling. Cove, crown, and bed molding styles are the most commonly used ceiling trim. When this type of trim is installed, it is understood that wider molding makes the ceiling appear lower than it is.

Chair Rail Molding

This decorative trim is generally installed along the wall surface about 3 feet up from the floor. It is installed in order to prevent the wall from becoming scratched or dented due to the chair backs being set up against it.

Base Shoe Molding

Base shoe molding provides a covering of gaps between the floor and the baseboard. This trim has a flat-sided top and bottom. The side of this molding that is visible has a rounded edge.

Door and Window Casing Molding

Casings that are installed around windows and doors are used to create a decorative frame. They also serve a functional purpose. This type of trim covers gaps between the door or window and the wall. Door and window casings are often flat and are able to be easily joined.

Picture Molding

This type of rounded molding is installed on the wall and is often used to support pictures and paintings. It is positioned about 8 feet from the floor.

Wall Paneling

Manufactured in large sheets, this molding covers either full walls or wall sections. It can be made from many different wood materials and is available in many different designs.

Molding Wood Types

Oak is the most popular hardwood used in trim and molding products. It is easily available at most home improvement stores and lumber shops and fits into most budgets. Pine is the most inexpensive wood used and is easier to install than hardwoods. It accepts paint well but is difficult to stain evenly. MDF is also inexpensive. It is a fiberboard which has no wood grain. It does not accept stain well but is easy to paint.